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Old 04-29-2013, 06:12 PM   #31
BeccaPrice
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I was meaning professional reviewers.
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Old 04-29-2013, 06:15 PM   #32
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I was meaning professional reviewers.
Oh... sorry for the mini-rant then.
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Old 04-29-2013, 06:27 PM   #33
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Who is Enid Blyton?
Famous Five? Secret Seven? Noddy?

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Enid Mary Blyton (11 August 1897 – 28 November 1968) was a British children's writer also known as Mary Pollock.
She is noted for numerous series of popular books based on recurring characters and designed for different age groups. Her books have enjoyed huge success in many parts of the world, and have sold over 600 million copies.
One of Blyton's most widely known characters is Noddy, intended for early years readers. However, her main work is the genre of young readers' novels in which children have their own adventures with minimal adult help. Series of this type include the Famous Five (21 novels, 1942–1963, based on four children and their dog), the Five Find-Outers and Dog, (15 novels, 1943–1961, where five children regularly solve crimes before the local police) as well as The Secret Seven (15 novels, 1949–1963, a society of seven children who solve various mysteries). She also wrote some lesser known poems and books.
Her work involves children's adventure stories, and fantasy, sometimes involving magic. Her books were and still are enormously popular throughout the Commonwealth and across most of the globe. Her work has been translated into nearly 90 languages and her literary output was of an estimated 800 books over roughly 40 years.
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Old 04-29-2013, 06:37 PM   #34
GlenBarrington
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The world was just too big for global literary cults 70 years or so ago.

As near as I can tell from the Wikipedia entry on her, she wasn't all that pleasant a person in real life. A real piece of work it seems!
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Old 04-29-2013, 06:43 PM   #35
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I doubt that most of us are "targeted" with that attempt to disguise the gender. I am, most certainly, not. Most of the stuff that I am reading was recommended somewhere or by somebody, and that always trumps the gender or genre.

However, looking back to the list of the books read in the last decade... If I was asked to first read the book, then tell the sex of the author, only "Tigana" and "A song for Arbonne" would have fooled me.

Superb works, both of them.
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Old 04-29-2013, 07:04 PM   #36
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I don't care if the author is male or female. However, I generally tend to prefer a female protagonist, and that usually means the name on the cover will be female.
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Old 04-29-2013, 07:49 PM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GlenBarrington View Post
I think of myself as a regular sort of guy (don't we all though?), and I know that I am much less likely to buy a book by a person named with just initials than I am by a woman.
I like to think of myself as highly irregular. (By the way, I strongly suspect that Jean Auel is pretending to be a woman to hide the fact that she's really a French dude.) If you don't buy books from initialed authors, how will they ever earn enough to afford a full name?

I don't care if an author is female. I do care if I'm getting a romance novel foisted off on me. I am, therefore, more careful when buying a book written by any female who does not already have a reputation for not writing romance novels.
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Old 04-29-2013, 07:55 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by murraypaul View Post
Did it?
Didn't seem to hurt Agatha Christie, Dorothy L Sayers, Patricia Wentworth, Ngaio Marsh...
Golden age crime fiction was completely dominated by women (writing as women), and I don't believe that men didn't read them.
And no boys read Enid Blyton growing up?
Crime is mostly read by women. Also these authors are British. I avoided reading Ngaio Marsh because I thought the author was make...

For US we have my favorite crime writer Craig Rice who is female.
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Old 04-29-2013, 10:17 PM   #39
FizzyWater
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I know of one male author writing romance with an "initialled" name - he (or possibly his publisher) doesn't want women to immediately skip over his books because they're written by a guy.

One of my online friends read his first book, and she had some complaints. I can't remember what they are specifically - I'm afraid if I tried to list them, I'd be listing the things *I* don't like about male authors - but when I pointed out the author was male, she felt that explained a lot of her issues.

(As Becca has mentioned above, there is often a difference in plot- versus character-driven storylines, for example. That's the only one I can think of off the top of my head. I also remember my friend commented on how the book tended to focus on the way the woman looked, versus on how the man looked, but since I haven't read it, I can't say if I'd agree to that one).

Last edited by pdurrant; 04-30-2013 at 06:33 AM. Reason: removed comment on political topic.
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Old 04-29-2013, 10:31 PM   #40
BeccaPrice
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I understand there's actually a fair number of men writing romances under women's names (I think I read that in terms of Harlequin authors) - I couldn't give you examples, however.
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Old 04-29-2013, 10:47 PM   #41
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Why would women want to disguise their gender by using initials?
It is some issue with feeling you're going to be pre-judged for being female?

If so that seems strange to me, the gender of an author has zero impact on whether I'm going to get a book or not.
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Old 04-29-2013, 11:02 PM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Catlady View Post
I don't care if the author is male or female. However, I generally tend to prefer a female protagonist, and that usually means the name on the cover will be female.
I'm the same.
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Old 04-30-2013, 12:06 AM   #43
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Originally Posted by BeccaPrice View Post
The problem is, with a few exceptions, men don't read books by women writers. If I spend a bit of time googling, I'm sure I can find the research on this. My understanding is that JK Rowling used her initials so that boys wouldn't be turned off by "girls' books".
My favourite science fiction authors are Elizabeth Moon, Kristine Katherine Rusch Land Lois McMaster Bujold. I read as many woman science fiction authors as I do men. I don't differentiate.

Overall, I would say I enjoy women science fiction authors more than men at the moment, but there are some men whose work I enjoy too.
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Old 04-30-2013, 05:44 AM   #44
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Look, real men just can't read science fiction by women, you're there in the plot, ray guns are blasting, things are coming to an exciting climax, then suddenly, for no reason, there is a 10 page section describing what type of shoes the hero/heroine is wearing - totaly kills it.

Yes, I'm joking (Well, except for Richelle Mead's Succubus series ).

As for authors with initial, it seems fairly random, sometimes because they are writing in a genre prodominantly dominated by the gender they are not and sometimes for no reason at all - Or possibly to make them seem more literary ala H G Wells, G K Chesterton, J D Salinger, J R Hartley.

The only author I can think of where the initial is used for a reason was the late Iain M Banks (If the M is included then it is science fiction, if not them mainstream fiction)
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Old 04-30-2013, 05:45 AM   #45
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Where would we have been without the immortal J.R. Hartley, as you so rightly say!
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